Monday, 3 December 2007

Cemeteries in Casey and Cardinia

With the upsurge of interest in family history, cemeteries have become a popular source of information for genealogists. If you are interested in researching cemeteries then you can access many cemetery records through the Australian Cemeteries website
It's  a great site and sometimes, if you are lucky, it even has head stone photographs.
We will have  a look at the eight cemeteries in the Casey Cardinia area.

Berwick Cemetery The first Trustees were appointed for this Cemetery on July 25 1860. They were Charles Rossiter, James Feehan, John Brisbane, Abram Gardiner and Adam Ritchie.  They have  a website which includes a deceased search

Bunyip Cemetery The Bunyip Cemetery site was officially reserved on November 22, 1886 and on December 6, 1886 the first Trustees were appointed - Joseph Williams, George Birch and James Barnes.

Cranbourne Cemetery   The site for the Cemetery was reserved on December 11, 1857 and the following Trustees were appointed at the same time - Alexander Cameron, Patrick Thomson, James Smith Adams, William Sykes and Edward Malloy.

Gembrook Cemetery   Land for the Gembrook Cemetery was set aside on July 14, 1879 and on July 28 the following Trustees were appointed Talworth Benjamin Backhouse, Henry James, Alexander Crichton, John Walters and Charles Brache.

Harkaway Cemetery It was established in June 1873 as a private cemetery, called Zions Hill,  and owned by a group of local families. In 1905 it was decided that it should be gazetted as a public cemetery and Immanuel Wanke, Francis Barr, George Washington, Edward Hillbrich and John Durling were appointed Trustees on June 30 and on September 12 1905  it was officially gazetted as a public cemetery*.

Lang Lang Cemetery The Lang Lang Cemetery site was reserved on December 5, 1887 and the first Trustees appointed December 10, 1889 were Thomas Poole (whose grave is pictured right), William Jones, Prosper Henry Victor Le Roux, Joseph Foster, William Norquay, Patrick McGrath, Edmund McGrath and Alexander McMillan.

Nangana Cemetery (also called Emerald Cemetery or Macclesfield Cemetery)  On February 6 1883 land was set aside for the Nangana Cemetery.    The first record of Trustees I can find is from February 27, 1893 when Carl Nobelius, Thomas Collis, Edwin Hunt, George Charman and James Slade. The Emerald Cemetery is now run by the Greater Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust  and there is a deceased search function on their website

Pakenham Cemetery The site for the Pakenham Cemetery was reserved on February 13, 1865 and the first trustees were appointed on May 8, 1865 and they were John Startup, Richard Fortune, Michael Bourke, Thomas Mulcahy and George Ritchie (whose grave is pictured left)  It is believed that the first burials actually took place in the 1850s.

The Necropolis Springvale - Many people opt for cremation and for people in this area this was usually done at The Necropolis in Springvale,  where the first cremation took place in 1905. It's now called the Springvale Botanical Cemetery. Their burial records are on-line - you can access them at

* Information from Harkaway Cemetery Tour: Ordinary people, interesting lives - a walk in the historic Harkaway Cemetery, published by the Narre Warren & District Family History Group, 2016. They have researched walks in the Berwick, Cranbourne, Harkaway, Lang Lang and Pakenham cemeteries - more information on these publications can be found on their wesbite

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